I arrived in Antigua on Tuesday early evening after a hellish time of it going through customs in both Mexico AND Guatemala. I loved flying Air Mexicana, but having to stop in Mexico city and use my my ENTIRE 1 hour and 25 minute stopover to go through that mile long immigration line for no reason at all when I wasn't even walking out of the airport? Total crap and stressful beyond imagination! I made my connecting plane just before they closed the door. CRAP.
Air Mexicana: the airline that actually still gives you full meals, even on a one hour flight! And the food was, wait for it, GOOD! Who knew?
I am staying at El Rosario which is run by the very lovely Olga. Olga speaks not one word of English. Challenging? Yes.... But, my friend Deet lives on the property and she helped set me up. And I have an enormous studio with a waterfall shower with fabulous hot water and a wonderful little fireplace. I also get three delicious home cooked meals included in my room rate. And how much am I paying a day here, you ask? $20!!! And I get purified water and access to the main house to get anything else I need as well. Oh, El Rosario is right across the street from meson Panza Verde, my favorite hotel here with yoga classes and a sweet little bar. In fact, I went to an art gallery opening there last night!
Part of my studio at El Rosario
With friends at Meson Panza Verde
I've become friends with Yael, her daughter Julia, and Trish who all hail from the US. I went out to the bar where Trish is bartending at night, Rumbar, and Yaul, Julia and I drank Mojitos and flopped out on the cushions laid out upstairs on the floor flooded in candlelight. We got home late but didn't care. We had such a great time!
I have found my Spanish school, Academia Colonial, and will begin my tutoring either tomorrow or on Monday. I will write more about this later. Julia and Trish both study here and Jean Paul, the young American owner from New Orleans is a doll and has let me come and hang out here to use the free WiFi. As I sit there writing this it is raining and I am under a covered patio with the mixed sounds of Spanish and English around me. I can smell the banana bread that Jean Paul makes for all who visit baking in the oven. Heaven...
Oh, and Jean Paul, who also runs Rumbar downstairs, has the most exquisite dance studio space upstairs. Did I mention he offers cooking classes here as well? Don't think I'm not in talking to him about yoga and cooking workshops. I can see it. That space is so calling my name!
Have I mentioned how much I love coming back here? I always feel like I'm returning to an old lover who cherishes me. I feel so embraced and blissful here. And how nice is it to be welcomed with warmth and friendship in a far off land?
The sign left to welcome me by Deet on my studio door
Off to tea and banana bread then. More in the coming days...